For Heavens Sake, Teach the Kids How to Sew

by Ramona on October 26, 2012

Well, hey there readers, October must be book publishing month.  Here’s a fantastic book by another one of ASG’s own talent pool.  Lynn Weglarz’ book I Can Sew goes all out and offers projects which children can actually sew, and that is part & parcel of who we are (encouraging children to sew, that is).   Lynn is a past chapter president of our Portland chapter, then served as ASG Regional Representative. Next thing we know, she wrote an entire book!  Here is how it happened, in Lynn’s own words.


Well here it is – my newest book (truth told, my only book!): I Can Sew.  Something I would have never imagined; write a book, let alone having it published!!

The background on how it came about: I’m on design lists with different editors, and emails will go out looking for specific project ideas.  I’ll spend a few days thinking about said project, sketch out a few designs and send back to editors.  Then it’s a wait and see if they like any of my ideas.  If they do I’ll get a note back asking to make up project A for X dollars and it’s needed by specified time.  I got an email asking designers for ideas for 4 categories; slippers, machine embroidery stitches, kids sewing and something else I’ve already forgotten.  Well I thought I could come up with a few ideas for slippers and kid’s projects, a note went back in to the editor asking for a bit more clarification.  My editor sent back some very detailed notes on what she was looking for.  Very easy now to cross slippers off my list and concentrate on kid’s projects, still thinking there are other people also sending in ideas for kid’s projects.  I sent in my project ideas and when they were accepted, I realized I was writing a book all by myself!  A huge surprise/shock; in fact I didn’t say anything to anybody until I had actually signed the contract for fear it wouldn’t happen in the end!  My husband is most excited that I now have an ISBN number and hopefully will end up in the Library of Congress!

The book: there are 8 projects in this book; starting with ponytail scrunchy (easy) and ending with making an apron for mum (the hardest, so to speak.)  My editor (I love saying that!) wanted the book not so much to be a book on how to use a sewing machine, sew a 5/8” seam, but rather be more project oriented.  I started with the easy ponytail scrunchy and then each project became a bit harder with a few more skills being taught in each new project (digital music player carrier, pillowcase, drawstring backpack, secret pocket pillow, doll skirt, doll shirt and apron for mum).  The book has all the instructions, patterns and the beginning pages are definitions of terms used in the book (narrow hem, zigzag, etc.)

Promo blurb from the publisher about my book: “A great teaching tool for young sewers, this book features easy-to-understand instructions and clear, step-by-step illustrations that will guide novice sewers through techniques such as straight stitches, pivot and turn, elastic casings, sewing around curves, hemming, and much more. Each lesson builds upon the skills learned in the previous lesson, and the projects include a pony tail scrunchy, a digital music player carrier, a drawstring backpack, a secret pocket pillow, and an apron. The simple, contemporary designs will ensure success for the beginner sewer and help instill a lifelong passion for the craft.”  Doesn’t that sound impressive?!

What’s up now: I’m working on setting up book signings (here in Portland and where any of my away friends can “make it happen”!) along with mini make it/take its (ponytail scrunchy and a flower that can be pinned onto any of the projects for an embellishment.)  I’m now depending on the “kindness of strangers” to help promote book signings (thank goodness for friends on Facebook and the magic of the Like button).  Books have a short shelf life, so I need to make sure everybody knows it’s out there.  I’m even googling my book to see where it’s being sold and how it’s doing (Amazon ( (Barnes and Noble  The book is barely out and I see already used copies up for sale – how does that happen so fast and should I be upset that said person has bought the book and decided it needs to be re-sold?!)

I think my book will make a great Christmas present; maybe packaged with sewing lessons/fabric/sewing notions or for a very nice present, a new sewing machine.

Many thanks to ASG for letting me blog about my book!!

Lynn Weglarz

Former Chapter President, Columbia River (Portland) Chapter

Former Regional Representative, Pacific Northwest


Pleasure is all ours, Lynn!  We hope your book sells out and has to go into further printings!  Here’s a picture of some of Lynn’s students.

Wendy, Claire, Molly, Phoebe


Samina, American Sewing Guild. Follow us on Twitter @SewingGuild


Pat Frost October 26, 2012 at 2:55 pm

Lynn, you are so talented! I wish you the best of luck. I am so impressed that I now know an book author!
Pat Frost

Adrienne Smith October 26, 2012 at 3:00 pm

Congratulations Lynn! I’m looking forward to your book signing at Portland Sewing this weekend!

Lynn Findlay October 26, 2012 at 3:21 pm

Way to go, Lynn! Congratulations – what an honor it would be to have your book be in the Library of Congress! Looking forward to your future books!

Joelle Waddle October 26, 2012 at 3:46 pm

Wahoo for you, Lynn! This book will inspire young sewists with the listed projects! What a great gift idea for those of us with “grands”!

Leigh Wheeler October 26, 2012 at 4:07 pm

Congratulations Lynn! You’re a published author – how cool is that? The projects sound really fun and useful for kids.

Marsha McClintock October 26, 2012 at 4:09 pm

Congrats Lynn! I’m planning to use my copy of your book for projects for my granddaughter. She’s 4 and is already interesting in sewing.

Viola Pruitt October 26, 2012 at 7:10 pm

This is a fantastic book for beginning sewers!
I’m so very happy that ASG Portland chapter has talented artists dedicated to their craft, and representing right here in the NW!
Congratulations Lynn for all you’ve accomplished!

Diana Ruiz October 27, 2012 at 12:48 pm

This book is filled with great projects! Nice job, Lynn! I am looking forward to giving this book to my nieces to inspire them to sew!

Jean Kennedy October 27, 2012 at 8:44 pm

I’ll add my congratulations to all of those above. I know first-hand how good you are at teaching kids, and I’m sure your skill comes through in the book. Besides the Library of Congress, I’d love to see a copy in my local library!

Darlene Aniasco October 28, 2012 at 3:26 pm

Fabulous book. I think this is a must have for any chapter that wishes to reach out to the next generation. Lovely gift from grandma, too. 🙂

Janith Bergeron November 28, 2012 at 2:52 pm

Finally got copies. The original order through Amazon was held up because I also ordered a book not yet out. Then Amazon was out of them. Finally Barnes & Noble filled my order. Lynn this is super. I’m packaging up copies with supplies for one of the projects for gift baskets for relatives to purchase for our students for the holidays. I will say they are a ‘hot’ item. The photography and colors are so exciting.

Comments on this entry are closed.

Previous post:

Next post: